The Philadelphia 76ers are being praised as one of the winners in the 2018 NBA Draft after trading to acquire former Texas Tech guard Zhaire Smith and a 2021 first-round pick.
The Sixers gave up the draft rights to No. 10 overall pick Mikal Bridges to get Smith and a first-rounder from the Miami Heat in a trade with the Phoenix Suns. ESPN’s Jonathan Givony called Philadelphia one of the biggest winners of draft night after the move.
The Sixers not only add a superb asset to their treasure trove of picks, but they also get one of the most intriguing young prospects in the draft in the freakishly athletic Smith. He is likely to develop into one of the best defenders in this class, and he has shown enough improvement with his 3-point shooting to give him 3-and-D potential next to Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons in time.
Some anonymous NBA scouts were questioning the hype around Smith before the draft, but many draft analysts think he has tremendous upside. That’s why he often was projected as a possible lottery pick after his freshman season with the Red Raiders.
Smith joins one of the most talented young teams in the league in the Sixers. If Philadelphia is able to help him keep developing, the trade will continue to be lauded years from now.